Why Elon Musk Wants to Charge You a ‘Small Fee’ to Write Posts on X

Elon Musk-owned X (formerly known as Twitter) could soon start charging new users an annual fee to give them access to write, like, reply to, or bookmark posts on the platform. The billionaire confirmed the plans to charge new users on the microblogging platform on Monday, stating that the move was aimed at reducing spam on X. A recurring fee on an annual basis could be charged, according to a report, but there is no clarity on the duration for which users will be charged for these basic privileges on the platform.

Musk confirmed the development after @xDaily, an account that posts news related to the social media platform, re-shared a code tracker’s post about the platform charging new users before they can make posts. The original poster @xUpdatesRadar claimed to have found the information about this policy within the strings of codes within the web version of X. Replying to the speculation, Musk said, “Unfortunately, a small fee for new user write access is the only way to curb the relentless onslaught of bots. Current AI (and troll farms) can pass “are you a bot” with ease.”


The original post found information that hints at how the new policy might work. One block of text stated, “New accounts are required to pay a small annual fee before you’re able to post, like, bookmark, and reply. This is to reduce spam and to create a better experience for everyone. You can still follow accounts and browse X for free.” The account also claimed that the company had earlier tested this policy in New Zealand and the Philippines.

While curbing spam seems to be the main reason behind the move, Musk also shared another reason for enacting the subscription model for new users. In a separate post, he said, “The onslaught of fake accounts also uses up the available namespace, so many good handles are taken as a result.”

The announcement has garnered mixed reaction from the user base. Some users called the decision “unfortunate but necessary”, pointing at the issue of bot accounts spamming popular posts, while others expressed concerns over its effectiveness. One user said, “Bot farmers have money, as do professional trolls and influence operators. If anything, they’re more likely to be willing to pay than authentic users because this is literally their income stream.”

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